29 February 2016

It has begun...

Classics season, that is...
Het Volk, er...Her Nieuwsblad and Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne were last weekend.
I got up to ride Saturday, but couldn't tear myself away from the TV. That's right, I said TV.
I finally got the house network working properly, so I could watch Sporza on the 55. It was fairly brilliant.
Screw all that hunching over the laptop crap.
Here's the last 70km of the race :

Sunday, the weather perfect, so I mounted the Ridley, and met The Heathens for a ride to Swansea.
The knee felt really good. No pain whatsoever.
On the way back though, my lack of fitness reared it's ugly head.
Once on 12th St., my legs clocked out for the day, and I let the group go. I rolled home from Amazon at a blistering 25kmh. Still faster than some who have been "training" all Winter, but I digress...
No bonk, no coming apart...just a simple lack of fitness and power.
When the fact that I haven't ridden 80km since November is taken into account, I'll take it. Still knocked down the whole loop in right at three hours.
The knee feels good today. Looks like it's time to start rebuilding...
See you on The PowerStation Tuesday morning...

I did miss KBK. I'll watch it today.
Here's the video...

Things of interest:
Yeah...Belgian blue Ridley...
Speaking of blue, the guys at Saffron know their way around it too...
NAHBS was last weekend. Eriksen won the award for best welds...again...
 Internal hydraulic line...
A row of dimes you say??
They should just re-name it "The Eriksen Award"
And "handbuilt" can be carbon too...
This Sarto track bike gives me a warm, funny...

Just FYI, my birthday is coming up in about 6 weeks...
I'll gladly accept one of the following...
or even...
You have 6 weeks...make it happen!!

Happy Leap Day. It would figure that it's a Monday this time around!
Gotta jet and get The Duke to school, and hit Lowe's for some Service Course supplies.
Be good. And if you cannot, be careful.

22 February 2016


As I was extremely lazy Saturday morning, the chirp from the alarm went unheeded. No ridey outside. Trainer time was the call...again. An hour. No worries.
Then we packed up for a little adventure, and took Junior Management out to Peachtree Rock Heritage Preserve.

It was a nice hike thru the woods, and a good educational experience for the boys.

Met with the core Heathen group Sunday for a short spin. 2 hours.
About an hour in, the rain began to fall.
Newly repaired knee? Check
Newly repainted frameset? Check
New, out of the box, Diadora shoes? Check
The Ridley rode flawlessly, as usual, seeing that I built it.
Actually, I did shellac a medium-sized pothole in Shandon, which loosened the headset a bit. Thanks to Steve Benjamin for being so worried about infrastructure. Oh wait...
It'll get remedied this morning.
The headset, that is...
Out infra? Yeah...that'll happen in our lifetimes.

As for the shoes, they're Diadora Vortex Pros. Same sole as my old Jet Racer Pros, so cleat set-up was easy, and there was no reason to dither with seat height.
They're light...and I mean LIGHT, and plenty stiff. I didn't think I'd like the BOA system, but it's fairly brilliant. Easily adjustable, and there's no need to crank it down like velcro. Simple to adjust on the fly too.
And the upper itself is outstanding. Between the lack of a true tongue inside the shoe, and the BOA, the Vortex Pro fits like slipper. No pressure points, and even tension across the entirety of the shoe. No pinching here, or looseness there. Normally, it takes anywhere from a few rides, to a few weeks to break in a road shoe. Not these. They were good to go about 20 minutes into the ride.
The toebox is roomy too. Plenty of room inside for my orthotics.
If interested, they can be found around the intarwebs on pretty deep discount right now. Think I'mma go buy the MTB/CX version shortly....
From the "Where is this and When do we leave?" File :

And to end, Sven's last ride was yesterday. It was a great race, and pretty emotional for more than a few folks...

Thank you Sven!

Happy Monday everyone! Enjoy it. I'm stuck here with a sick kid.

15 February 2016

Almost there...

Another weekend on the trainer. So ends the 4th week back on the bike. Same schedule for this week, but upping the time to a full hour. Then...outside...
As it's supposed to be warmer this coming weekend, venturing outside is in the cards.
ANNNND I got the Ridley finished. I mentioned my dumbassery in throwing away the BB cable guide.
In it's stead, I ordered a Cannondale guide that fits an EVO carbon bike.
A little 80 grit sandpaper, and it fits the Noah just fine. It's called 'mechanicing'.

Not quite sure about the gray tape, but I bought it, I own it, and it's on there now, so....
Next time, I have an idea for a Belgian flag theme. Pretty sure it'll work...or look like dogmeat. Either way...
It's still wearing the 10v stuff...for the next couple of months. Knee surgery exhausted my 'special squirrel' savings.
It'll have 11v on it before Summer starts...

Middelkerke showed what a heavy, muddy, slick CX race looks like.
Oh, and watch the beginning...right side of the screen...about 4-5 seconds in. That's what a broken chain under power looks like...

If you're into such things, here's a FULL descent of Pikes Peak on a road bike.

Mike Cotty, and the guys at Col Collective do some really good videos. Pikes Peak is becoming a 'need to do before I die' sort of thing. There's a "Gran Fondo" ride in August. 12.5 miles...4700+ feet of climbing...between 7800 and 14,000 feet. Sounds like big fun.

When you need to motorpace, but can't find a babysitter. (H/T to INRNG & Cor Vos)

Happy Monday! Stay inside. It's crappy out there, and only going to get crappier in the next 24ish hours.

10 February 2016

Go in peace brother! #FUCancer

Our friend Ken has moved on, beyond the cancer that ravaged his body for so long. He fought a valiant fight, but it just wasn't enough.
We already covered what a mensch the guy was in life. It's a VERY rare thing that you meet a person about whom NO ONE has a bad thing to say. Kenny was this guy.
He was a talented musician, who played for the SC Philharmonic...double bass no less, a brilliant and insightful writer, a great rider, and a friend to many.
Everyone that has spoken of Ken has a story. A story that is funny, touching, insightful, or that changed them in some way. I think that this was Kenny's gift to each of us. Some occurrence, or experience, with him that we'll never forget. I know I have such a story.
I've talked about it before...even wrote about it...
Billy wrote about it...(and showed the knee hole! Ewwwww....!)
Hell, even Kenny wrote about it...
That day on the bike will stay with me for the rest of my life.

Cancer beat up on him for three years. I just don't know if I would have the strength of will that Kenny had. Through everything, he remained the same guy. He didn't allow the disease to change who he was.
I know it's wholly selfish, but I wish I'd have made an effort to know him better. Even so, it was my distinct privilege, and honor, to know him, and call him 'friend'.
This is Kenny, and his lovely wife, Jaime. This is how I'll remember him. Smiling. Jovial. Sweet...but with just a hint of mischief in his eyes.
He is no longer in pain. No longer being ravaged by an unexplainable disease.
He's now riding smooth roads, tailwinds pushing him along, sunshine on his face.
May Jaime, and the rest of Kenny's family, and large number of friends, find some peace.

Billy Joel was right. Only the good die young...

09 February 2016

Turning a corner

So the rehab continues. Another trainer ride this morning. I hate the infernal beast, but it's serving the purpose right now.
50 minutes (probably should have just rolled it up to the hour) @ 100rpm. HR up, and a little sweat. This morning was the first ride since I've gotten back on the bike where that "feeling" came into my legs. This is a good thing.
Once it gets warm enough, I'm going to venture outside. Probably on the CX bike at first.
Well, I'm sort of forced to at this point.
All the bit to finish the Ridley have arrived. I went down to Service Course on Sunday to run cables, and realized that, in my haste to tear down the Noah for paint, I tossed the BB cable guide.
Dumbass? Party of one?
And did I mention that it's a proprietary piece? Standard Shimano or Campy guides don't work.
And did I mention that no one in the US has the part? Not even QBP, who imports the fucking things.
I have three different guides on order at this point. Pretty sure that one of them will work, even if I'm forced to modify it a bit.
Either that, or I'll be forced to buy 11v Di2. Wonder how that conversation with The Boss will go? LOLZ.

Fun CX races last weekend :


Sint Niklaas

And Spencer from Ritte re-did a Lotus Esprit Turbo

Not much else going on around here.
Oh, the Spring Series starts this weekend, if you're into that sort of thing. Is it getting earlier every year, or it is me?
Sunday should be good. Nothing says fun like starting a crit in 25 degree weather.
I'll be in Service Course, where it's 60-ish.

05 February 2016

Moving along...and a sad goodbye...

So my progress seems to be...well...progressing. I'm up to 45 minutes on the turbo. No pain at all. Plenty of muscle weakness, but zero discomfort.
That's not completely true. My taint is still unhappy with being thrown right back into the mix after almost 3 months off. Thanks be to Dog for Mad Alchemy chamois cream.
The Classics DVDs have been keeping me company. Sad that World Cycling Productions went belly-up.

The Noah is nearly done too. Paint is finished, and all parts have been hung. Just waiting on the brake cable/housing kit to hit the door. Still need to figure out bar tape...
A photo posted by MM (@mminsc) on

White doesn't look right, and black might make it TOO dark. Thoughts are gray, but dark gray to match the frame, or light gray to match the accents. I found some Belgian flag tape, but I'll be damned if I spend $45 on bar tape. And I'll be double damned if I give that money to Mike Sinyard's kid.
Once the bike is finished, I'll post some better pictures. There are few little details that aren't shown in that Instagram shot.

And the goodbye...
Dave Mirra, BMX/Triathlon/RAAM legend decided that the demons in his head were too much, and ended his own life yesterday in Greenville, NC. He was 41. Married. Two kids.

No reason was given, and it's really hard to wrap the old noggin around this one. The guy was rich, popular, had a great wife and beautiful daughters, and was super nice/down to Earth. Hell, with all of his money and fame, he lived in Greenville, NC!!
Dave pretty much had it all...
One's mind grasps for possible reasons. The thought I can't get out of my mind is that Dave was suffering from CTE. Pretty sure he took more than a few head knocks while perfecting his tricks.
Either way, what Dave decided to do was just NOT the answer...never is...for anyone.
If any of you ever get to the point in your lives that harming yourself becomes a viable option, wait. Wait, step back, assess and CALL SOMEONE. Hell...call me!!
Or hit up the  National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, call 1-800-273-TALK. 
There are people that can help!!

Did I know Dave? Nope. But I have several friends who did, and a few who knew him well. These are the people who suffer...family and friends.
I don't care who you pray to, or even if you pray, but spare a thought for Dave, his wife and kids, and his friends today.

Have a good weekend. Hug your family.

01 February 2016

Monday Monday

Another weekend has passed...
Not much happening around here. Did some home repair projects that have been neglected since the little robot fixed my knee. BTW, climbing a ladder sucks...
Rode the trainer for 35 minutes both days. 39x18/17 at 100rpm. Got the banged up leg spinning. I know I'm nearly the time to ride outside, as riding the turbo is starting to suck. This week, we move up to 45 minutes. Should be a barrel of monkeys...
Actually got some clear on the Ridley as well. Knocking that out today...

CX worlds went off this weekend. I'm not talking about the whole "motorized doping" thing. It's dumb. People that are dwelling on it, especially after the outstanding racing, are dumb.
No spoilers, but just watch LvdH drop the muddy descent on the last lap. Weight back and let it fly...

And the Dutch seem to have the whole 'offroad' thing figured out. How fun would these be at night?

SURFIN DUTCH TRAILS from Kiwivelo on Vimeo.

And remember, old guys can still shred...

Over The Hill from Transition Bikes on Vimeo.
Not me so much. That terrain would break my brittle bones...

And feel free to pinch this link, and pass it on to everyone you know...
"5 Things Cyclists do..."

Sun's out. Gonna be 70+F today. Go outside. You could be up North, with snow still on your yard.